Tip #47: Quick Kinesthetic Experiential Training Methods: Gallery Walk

The kinesthetic learner is often the most difficult to satisfy in classroom training. However, there are some creative ways to add movement to classroom content review activities. These kinesthetic activities provide whole body learning, which increases retention. Today, we will discuss the Gallery Walk.

What: A Gallery Walk involves having the participants walk and add their thoughts to flip charts posted along the length of a wall.

When: It can be used at any time you would like to review what learners either know or have learned.

Why: It is intended to provide some physical activity, specifically to meet the needs of kinesthetic learners.

How: The trainer posts flipcharts with different headings related to the topic at hand. The participants are instructed to walk from flipchart to flipchart, posting their ideas with a colored marker. The participants may be organized in groups of five, or in pairs, or may work separately. This activity is timed so that each group or individual has an opportunity to post their answers on every flipchart.

An alternative is to ask the participants to write down techniques or ideas pertaining to a specific subject or challenge, one item per sticky note. Then they can stroll from flipchart to flipchart, posting their sticky notes where they are most appropriate.

In both cases, the trainer or a participant should then read out the posted content on each flipchart.

A second alternative is to have small groups post their responses to a question on a flipchart and then have each group tape their flipcharts on the wall. All participants are then instructed to walk past and read all of the postings, with the intent of identifying two or three items that are of greatest significance to them. They would note these two or three items down and then either return to their small group for additional discussion or simply retain their notes for future application back on the job.

Benefits: There are a number of benefits to the use of a Gallery Walk:

  • It can build physical activity into content review.
  • It can increase participant physical energy.
  • It can link what they are learning to what they already know.
  • It can give kinesthetic learners an opportunity to move their bodies in order to learn.
  • It can test the participants’ ability to literally think on their feet.
  • It can make learning and learning review fun.

Level of Learning: Knowledge and comprehension.

Learning Styles: Kinesthetic, as well as aural, visual, print, and interactive.

Next week, we will discuss another kinesthetic experiential training method useful for checking comprehension: a skit.

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